Now it's up to Public Prosecutions boss Shaun Abrahams to deal with Zuma charges

29 April 2016 - 14:34 By Ernest Mabuza

While the full bench in Pretoria has reviewed and set aside the 2009 decision to discontinue the prosecution of President Jacob Zuma‚ the decision on reinstating the charges remains with the National Prosecuting Authority.Barring an appeal by Zuma or the NPA‚ it is up to the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) Shaun Abrahams to take a decision on whether to reinstate the 783 charges of fraud‚ corruption and racketeering against Zuma.The Supreme Court of Appeal said in a judgment in 2014 that it was not appropriate for the court to tell the NPA what to do‚ as this would be inappropriate transgression of the separation of powers doctrine.Zuma open to prosecution as court recommends review of corruption charges being droppedIn that case‚ the SCA was dealing with a matter where the high court in Pretoria not only set aside the NDPP’s decision to drop charges against suspended police crime intelligence head Richard Mdluli.The high court had also ordered the NDPP to reinstate all the charges against Mdluli and to ensure that the prosecution of these charges were enrolled and pursued without delay.The SCA said it agreed with the contention by the NDPP that the orders of the high court breached the doctrine of separation of powers.Read the original corruption charges brought against President Zuma“That doctrine precludes the courts from impermissibly assuming the functions that fall within the domain of the executive‚” said Judge of Appeal Fritz Brand.The SCA said in terms of the Constitution‚ the NDPP was the authority mandated to prosecute crime.“As I see it‚ the court will only be allowed to interfere with this constitutional scheme on rare occasions and for compelling reasons.”“Suffice it to say that in my view this is not one of those rare occasions and I can find no compelling reason why the executive authorities should not be given the opportunity to perform their constitutional mandates in a proper way‚” Brand said.Brand said the setting aside of the withdrawal of the criminal charges had the effect that the charges were automatically reinstated and it was for the executive authorities to deal with them...

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